backup/restoration inquiry


  #1  
Old 11-23-11, 10:38 AM
sgull's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: AK
Posts: 3,017
Received 11 Votes on 10 Posts
backup/restoration inquiry

From what I've been reading, hard drive failure/crash can be either physical problems that can occur with the hard disk/drive or "logical" problems causing data corruption of the operating system. Regardless, when such occurs and if I've got the system backed up (entire system image) to an external hard drive, what is the typical procedure for getting the machine up and running again with the backup? Assuming the (Windows) machine won't "boot" into Windows, or "boot up" at all? Does the backup somehow do the booting? The idea of imaging the system to a backup drive is all well and good, but what I'm wondering about is the restoration procedure. What might be a typical scenario, what are usually the steps? Never done it before and just trying to get a handle on it beforehand if possible. Any advice/comments appreciated
 
  #2  
Old 11-23-11, 10:57 AM
S
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: WI/MN
Posts: 20,165
Received 1,165 Votes on 1,123 Posts
I prefer to back up data to a separate hard drive but use optical media (usually DVD these days) for the restore files and then just boot the machine from the media.
 
  #3  
Old 11-23-11, 11:52 AM
sgull's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: AK
Posts: 3,017
Received 11 Votes on 10 Posts
Originally Posted by mitch17 View Post
I prefer to back up data to a separate hard drive but use optical media (usually DVD these days) for the restore files and then just boot the machine from the media.
My inexperience with backing up leaves me rather clueless about just what you are referring to in regard to what "data" you back up to a separate hard drive. Do you mean by data just the files you created yourself such as documents, photos, etc. ? What about restoring programs and the operating system itself? And what are the "restore files" you mention, where do they come from? Also, how and from where do you get the necessary boot info the machine needs onto the media (DVD)? Is that info with the "restore files"? Does your method involve drive imaging (using drive imaging software)?
 
  #4  
Old 11-23-11, 03:18 PM
H
Member
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: United States
Posts: 2,446
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I will tell you what I have done to back up things. As I remember from reading the specifications for your laptop you have a dvd-rw drive at least that is what I remember anyway. So to be sure read your laptops documentation and take the drive out to see for yourself. It should be possible as most but not all newer laptops allow you to swap the dvd-rw drive with an extra battery.
Once confirmed you can buy cd-r disks and then save your documents. That is what I did for a used Dell laptop I bought at auction only a bit in the reverse as I had never had anything on the new hard drive I bought for it so I downloaded the driver files for things like the modem,monitor,onboard sound card etc. and put all of the drivers onto my new Dell Laptop and then I put my Word and other programs on that I needed. It seems like I remember in another post you mentioning that you didn't like Vista on your laptop,not surprising as it was somewhat of a hog and helped the laptop to use up battery power like crazy from all accounts that I heard. Well if I was you I would go to Acers website and see if there are driver files for Windows 7 as you will need those but I have also heard that some driver files for Vista will work on Windows 7 so you could always go on a desktop that has two cd drives with one at least being a cd-rw drive and copy those driver files you would need from your original install disk. Be sure to wipe your drive first though after copying your files and then put your new operating system on. Good luck to you!
 
  #5  
Old 11-23-11, 04:08 PM
sgull's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: AK
Posts: 3,017
Received 11 Votes on 10 Posts
Hedgeclippers thanks for all that explanation of that particular method of backup procedure. I do have the Vista OS on my laptop, however it was not me who indicated I didn't like it on there. It's fine as far as I'm concerned.
However, I'm taking into consideration the idea of using an imaging program and using it to back up the entire system (files, OS, and all programs) onto an external hard drive so that I can restore the system easily in the event the hard drive in my laptop should fail. I'd rather not have to go the route of backing up to CDs, having to find and reload drivers and applications, or reinstall the OS. A simpler method, to me it seems, would be just to image everything onto a separate hard drive with a good imaging program (of the many out there), and then have that available to restore the laptop to its same configurations and with same programs and files etc (pre hard drive failure) once a new hard drive is installed. What's unclear to me at this point is about the procedure for such restoring. How exactly do I get the system image back onto a newly installed hard drive?
 
  #6  
Old 11-23-11, 06:50 PM
H
Member
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: United States
Posts: 2,446
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I think I have found what you are looking for and basically it requires that you partition your hard drive. This though in your case will not work since you already have a factory partition with your Acer laptop these are words of warning from the author of the article not me. I personally would save things onto an external hard drive which is really better. This person does talk about file transfer software but I know nothing about it it could even be malware in disguise but I don't know that for a fact I just procede with caution in matters I am not sure of. Here though is the link to the first thing I read about Never Re-install Windows Again Part 1 . As I say I know nothing about this and don't support this persons software.
I checked though with Amazon.com and there is some software from trusted known companies and here is a link to their page that I found http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_no...qid=1322102473 . Again I don't endorse any of the software as I have never tried it but I think you will at least need some kind of software if you want a complete backup of everything but will probably need an external hard drive too that would store your backup if you use the software on Amazon.com. Good luck to you!
 
  #7  
Old 11-23-11, 08:50 PM
sgull's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: AK
Posts: 3,017
Received 11 Votes on 10 Posts
Thanks hedgeclippers for those links, especially the article in the first link. The article talks about making an image of the entire system using imaging software, as I am wanting to do. I haven't yet taken the time to read over the entire article thoroughly, but I don't see any specific words of warning or other indicators, as you mention, from the author that because I happen to have a factory partition that the process will not work. I'm not clear as yet about how much or in fact whether my factory partition should complicate or otherwise throw a kink into making a full system backup with imaging. Making full-system images onto external drives for backup purposes is something that's quite commonly done these days and is supposedly made easy with the software available, so I'm hoping with enough guidance and understanding I can do it too. I'm sure the info in the article is highly relevant to what I'm wanting to find out and understand about the procedure. Thanks!
 
  #8  
Old 11-24-11, 05:12 PM
1
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 13
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
1. not all laptops / computer support booting to a usb device, be it a usb thumb drive or a usb external drive.

2. this is why imaging software often images back to bootable dvd-rs ( and if it's a multiple set, the 1st dvd-r is usually the bootable one )

3. backing up to a external hard drive can be done either by compression the file into a propietary archival format, but usually back up programs do not make bootable drives, they assume you still have the OS cd to restore the OS back to, install at the minimum the back up and restore program, and then restore your system as you last had it from there.

4. Hard drive imaging programs take a snap shot of when you want the system to be restored to, so in the event of a crash or failure, you boot to the dvd-r set, restore back to the drive and you are back to where you where before the failure. the problem is they are not good for incremental restoration, since the snapshot image is taken you want it to be taken. a back up program regularly back up in increments, so data is current as the last day it was backed up.

i prefer an image from dvd-r to certain programs and settings, with current data being pulled off a external hard drive if i need it in the even of crash / or failure.
 
  #9  
Old 11-25-11, 09:14 AM
sgull's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: AK
Posts: 3,017
Received 11 Votes on 10 Posts
Response to 1954HouseRemod:

1. For clarity, did you mean to say not all laptops / computers support booting "from" a usb device (rather than "to")? I'm not sure at all whether my older laptop (Acer model 5315)would, or how I'd find out for sure, but am beginning to doubt it especially because it didn't come originally with any actual Windows program disc(s) but instead came with the hard disk pre-partitioned from the factory with the D "drive" apparently (as far as I can understand it) intended mainly for use with the preinstalled Acer "eRecovery" feature of the pc, as well as with the factory default recovery discs which it strongly suggests the user create upon first use of the machine. I did create those discs as recommended and have them available, although am unclear about whether they would actually boot the machine up from a state of hard disk failure. I do know that they of course (once the machine is booted up) can restore the system back to it's original factory configuration, but my goal is to be able to restore the machine easily back to its most recent configuration.

2. Perhaps in some way the Acer eRecovery feature is already a sort of imaging software that, if I could ever get a good understanding of how it works and how to utilize it, I could create a usable full system backup either onto either an external drive or CDs.

3. If most or probably all backup programs do not make bootable discs (not "drives" as you might have mis-stated?) assume I still have the OS cd, then I suppose because I don't have the actual OS cd as I mentioned, then my only realistic option might be to try and restore my particular laptop using only the Acer eRecover feature and my long-ago created recovery discs along with whatever current backup I might have saved to CD (or external drive). And, if the pc is in a state where it won't boot by itself, I'd have to make sure I have a "bootable CD" unless the recovery discs I created already has such. All I know is I have these recovery discs, and on my D drive there are the following folders:
erData
erUBK_Folder
images
$Recycle Bin
System Information (of which when I click on get "access denied) message

4. I believe the eRecovery feature I speak of includes incremental backup, and if I learned how to utilize it I might be able to make a reliable (current/recent) full system backup. What's confusing to me is these recovery discs I made way back when and whether they would be what I at least would need in the event of a hard disk failure or corruption etc.
 
  #10  
Old 11-25-11, 10:21 AM
1
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 13
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by sgull View Post
Response to 1954HouseRemod:

1. For clarity, did you mean to say not all laptops / computers support booting "from" a usb device (rather than "to")?
CORRECT - booting from or to is the same, since not all laptops much less desktop support booting to USB feature ( be it an external thumb drive, cd/dvd drive or hard drive )

Originally Posted by sgull View Post
Response to 1954HouseRemod:

I'm not sure at all whether my older laptop (Acer model 5315)would, or how I'd find out for sure,

you can check into the BIOS for drive boot order, as in the BIOS area it allow you to select drive boot order typically you will see HDD0, HDD1 , CDROM, FLOPPY and USB ( if there is that option ).

Originally Posted by sgull View Post
Response to 1954HouseRemod:

but am beginning to doubt it especially because it didn't come originally with any actual Windows program disc(s) but instead came with the hard disk pre-partitioned from the factory with the D "drive" apparently (as far as I can understand it) intended mainly for use with the preinstalled Acer "eRecovery" feature of the pc, as well as with the factory default recovery discs which it strongly suggests the user create upon first use of the machine. I did create those discs as recommended and have them available, although am unclear about whether they would actually boot the machine up from a state of hard disk failure.
Typically the restore disc will boot up in the event of failure, since if the hard drive complete eats it and you replace it , they will generally partition and then restore the image back to the drive, My Toshiba Qosmio maje 5 -4.7 GB DVD-Rs just to restore to factory default settings and programs in the even of failure. Insane. The hidden partition is generally an active fat 16 / or fat 32 partition that boots up to a dos based environment to run the recovery if needed.



Originally Posted by sgull View Post
Response to 1954HouseRemod:

2. Perhaps in some way the Acer eRecovery feature is already a sort of imaging software that, if I could ever get a good understanding of how it works and how to utilize it, I could create a usable full system backup either onto either an external drive or CDs.
it might, My Toshiba came with pre loaded bloatware ( most of which I uninstalled ), by one of the programs was an online back up, similar to Carbonite. so after the restore from disk, you then in theory would restore to current status from online or external sources. I have not run it so I am not sure if this is the case.

Originally Posted by sgull View Post
Response to 1954HouseRemod:

3. If most or probably all backup programs do not make bootable discs (not "drives" as you might have mis-stated?) assume I still have the OS cd, then I suppose because I don't have the actual OS cd as I mentioned, then my only realistic option might be to try and restore my particular laptop using only the Acer eRecover feature and my long-ago created recovery discs along with whatever current backup I might have saved to CD (or external drive). And, if the pc is in a state where it won't boot by itself, I'd have to make sure I have a "bootable CD" unless the recovery discs I created already has such. All I know is I have these recovery discs, and on my D drive there are the following folders:
erData
erUBK_Folder
images
$Recycle Bin
System Information (of which when I click on get "access denied) message
some recovery may make a basic boot disk or make the 1st disc bootable in the set, it depends on the back up program. Ghost and Acronis True Image both make the 1st disk in a back up set, bootable, and both support incremental back up.

Data Backup Software Review 2012 | Best Backup Software | Backup Files - TopTenREVIEWS
 
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: